This Thursday sees QBoy and Neil Prince return to Superstore for another round of Put It In Your Mouth. Delving into their record boxes, the boys will be playing the best of r’n’b and hip hop from all sex and decades (but mostly ’90s) for some midweek drinking and dancing. Ahead of the party we asked Neil Prince to investigate the growing trend of celebrities from the genre putting things in their actual mouths…
Good old Beyonce. Ever the healthy one, here she is munching on an apple, setting a good example.
Unless her husband Jay-Z has his way. Here, have some pizza. No, really, have some more. MORE.
After all, Mariah can demonstrate the true joy a slice can bring. Simply slip on your heels and shed those pounds afterwards with a fierce workout on the cross trainer.
Eminem’s also one for fast food. Here he is pre-weight gain. McDonald’s being the order of the day.
But not for Mary J. She be loving crispy chicken down Burger King!
LL Cool J’s an Around The Subway Kinda Guy…
…Whilst Snoop Dogg likes the whole joint. Hope that’s not a lion. Or a pony.
Ginuwine getting caught up in the horse meat scandal there. The steaks is high.
So maybe just stick to a hot dog J-Lo?
She’s real. She’s feelin’ so good. She’s stuffing it down like a trooper. Oh, which brings us on to Lil’ Kim…
No prizes for what she’s after. Though she seems to have settled for a Peperami. Let’s move onto something healthier shall we?
Beets by Dre. They’re all the rage apparently. Or how about Justin’s corn on the cob?
A troublesome eating task. Like noodles. But Kanye is king.
Oh look, he’s finished his plate. Time for dessert!
Kelis loving a lollipop there. But a trip to the dentist was inevitable.
Next week sees the launch of a brand new Thursday night from the trailblazing and openly gay rapper QBoy. He’s delving into his love of classic hip hop and r’n’b, covering all decades and sexes (but lingering longest in the ’90s) for his latest club offering, the aptly named Put It In Your Mouth. We caught up with QBoy ahead of the party to quiz him on divas, rappers, records and being gay in hip hop…
What is the ethos behind your new night, Put It In Your Mouth?
Hip-hop and r’nb has always been my background, especially late ’80s and all throughout the ’90s, and right now there seems to be a big demand for it all over again which pleases me no end as a DJ. I’ve been having the time of my life playing with Neil Prince and David Oh at our night R&She where we play only female artists from hip-hop and r’n’b – but there is still always so many great tracks by male artists that I want to play or that get requested, so I wanted to make PIIYM a solid all-round ’90s r’nb party – with a little ’80s classic thrown in.
Which hip hop artist or rapper would you say has had the biggest influence on your career?
Salt-N-Pepa are my Queens no doubt. I’ve followed them since I was much younger and I am blessed to count them as friends of mine now (or you could say “stalker fan hunts down icons until they give in,” haha). I think Salt-N-Pepa are still the best example of great hip-hop as they were interesting characters and personalities, they were fashion trend setters, they made great music that everybody loved even if you were not a fan of rap – many with lyrics dealing with serious matters but in a palatable and comfortable way, and they gave the best performances, with girl DJ Spinderella, full live band and dancers and choreography. Most rappers just walk up and down with a microphone, which to me is not that captivating in a live performance. I would have to add PIIYM poster girl Lil’ Kim as a big influence too!
Neil Prince from R&She will be joining you for PIIYM… any other familiar faces we can expect to see over the next few months?
Yes yes – I definitely will be bringing in David Oh from R&She and DJ Mistamaker from new hip-hop night GULLY. Mistamaker started gayhiphop.com over 12 years ago and he is without a doubt the best scratch DJ instrumentalist the gay community has – a real talent.
What was the first ever hip hop or r’n’b record you ever bought?
Mmmmm – does early 5 Star count as r’n’b? I would say it was probably Neneh Cherry’s Manchild on 7″, but I also had a lot of Technotronic back then too – not strictly hip-hop but definitely rap!
Which year or decade of the music you love do you wish you could go back to?
Personally 1989 into 1990 was the most exciting music period for me. As well as Salt-N-Pepa and Neneh Cherry, I was also heavy into Janet’s Rhythm Nation 1814, the tail end of Michael’s Bad, De La Soul, Soul II Soul, Technotronic and the whole hip-house thing I loved too.
Since your debut EP came out in 2004, do you think it’s got significantly easier to be accepted as gay in the hip hop community?
I was never trying to be accepted by the hip-hop community. I actually had to fight to be accepted by the gay community. The gay community had little understanding of rap music, of hip-hop culture and were incredibly intolerant at first. Now it seems there is a new gay rapper every other week so I guess it’s easier now.
With homophobia still fairly rife in the genre, are there any artists you won’t play out?
I don’t agree with that. Homophobia is rife only in the gangsta element of hip-hop and it is the gangsta element that has been pushed – on purpose – by the major record companies since the early 1990’s. The homophobia, sexism, violence, gun and drug promotion was not in any of the mainstream acts before 1993. So, if you think hip-hop is homophobic then you are not looking hard enough for artists who aren’t. With the internet now you don’t have to listen to just what is played on the radio or TV anymore.
Best ever diva beef for sheer entertainment value?
A gay rapper never spills dirt on those he worships haha! The real divas I have met have always been nothing but friendly kind people. The Lil’ Kim verses Foxy Brown story however, as old as it is, was so entertaining way back when I seriously watched it like episodes of Dallas! #DRAMA!
What’s the most treasured record you own?
Hmmm… probably my signed Salt-N-Pepa LP’s!
And finally what can we expect to hear from your own music this year?
I am preparing to make the first music video from my new album. The song is a cover of 1979 classic Pop Muzik and I am super excited about it! I am talking with various directors about the right treatment as we speak – expect it in the Spring!
This Saturday plays host to the new night bust yo nut from Martyn Fitzgerald and Toby Grimditch (aka the brains behind Handsome and Carpet Burn). Whilst the laser basement sees the Italian stallion double-whammy of both Severino and Nico De Ceglia, the top bar features the musical stylings of legendary local bboy Mistamaker and young upstart Josh from gay hip hop clubnight Hard Cock Life. We posed the same set of questions to both DJs to find out what Saturday night has in store…
What was the first hip hop track or artist you ever remember really listening to?
Josh: 2Pac – Hit Em Up. Those upbeat opening lines “I ain’t got no motherfuckin friends, that’s why I fucked your bitch you fat motherfucker” appealed hugely to my 10 year old self.
Mistamaker: Thats a hard question because I’m an old old old old bboy now and I saw hip hop evolve from electro, so I would say I kinda started with electro like Newcleus – Jam on Revenge (The Wikki-Wikki Song) and then as it progressed I would say Kool Moe Dee was the first rapper who I was crazy about as a kid.
Who is your favourite r’n’b diva and why?
Josh: Victoria Beckham. Other than the music she’s got it all. Heard she’s dropping a mad hot r’n’b album this year though. Plus, Out Of Your Mind with Dane Bowers was a tune.
Mistamaker: In all honesty, I don’t really do r’n’b that much so I cant really answer but i do have lots of love for Chaka Khan. All the female people I like just did a few hits and disappeared like Da Brat and Sade.
What’s the most unexpected record in your collection?
Josh:Dane Bowers – Greatest Hits
Mistamaker: Imagination – Body Talk. I’m a HUGE fan of early ’80s black pop music, it was at a time when it wasn’t good to be gay and I was far too young to come out, so I was expressing my sexuality within whilst listening to this tune…
Who has had the most impact on the music you play?
Josh: My dad. He was an amateur breakdancer in the ’80s who tried to bring breakdancing into the UK mainstream. He didn’t really succeed, but he used to dance up and down the country anyway. When he wasn’t on tour he was always at home dancing to classic old skool hip hop. It had a huge impact on the music I play today. Drove my mum crazy though!
Mistamaker: Big L and Eazy E. Two massive pioneers who passed away through stupid shit, and dearly missed by hip hop; those two shaped my taste in lyricists. But if we are talking just club music I’d say the crowd, I love reading the crowd and going with the flow. I did a night a few years back and it was supposed to be hip hop and I ended up playing a three hour drum and bass set… so I’d say the people listening have the most impact on what I play.
Pretty much have to ask this considering all the commotion in the news of late! Beyonce: thumbs up or thumbs down?
Josh: Thumbs meh. Great songs but a bit weird hearing Sean Paul’s disembodied voice piped tinnily into the stadium.
Mistamaker: I really don’t care for her and her tantrums either way, so thumbs sideways I suppose haha.
Haters gonna hate.. But WHO are you’re still gonna play anyway?
Josh: Chris Brown. He’s obviously gay, let’s all support him on the road to coming out.
Mistamaker: Necro, I do a lot of Pirate radio, in fact it’s a majority of what I do these days and I love the fact you can play explicit music freely without all the bleeps and stuff, so Necro will always be played on air from me but as for clubs, I can give DMX a pass even though he’s a homophobic dick head.
Who in your expert opinion is a rising star who deserves way more attention?
Josh: It’s got to be Victoria Beckham. If the rumours are true, her new album will put A Mind of Its Own (her brilliant, sadly largely forgotten second solo single) to shame.
Mistamaker: Wow, there are two, Danny Brown from Detroit is an amazing MC, he’s so original and takes influence from many genres and I relate to loads of stuff he raps about. Secondly Zion I from Oakland California, I cant believe he’s not massive after all these years of melodic West Coast funky ish.. He’s genius too.
And finally, without revealing all your secrets… what’s an underrated gem we can expect to hear you play?
Josh: The Alkaholiks – Only When I’m Drunk
Mistamaker: Errrrrrr maybe Erick Sermon – Music… I really don’t know yet, I’m playing it by ear. I’m going to try and keep it on the chill tip and try and keep it roots hip hop but the crowd always changes, so if I have to change it up then I got a million tracks with me to satisfy everyone…
Join both Mistamaker and Josh HCL in the top bar at bust yo nut this Saturday 9th February from 9pm – 4am.
Handsome men Toby Grimditch and Martyn Fitzgerald bring a brand new night to Superstore next weekend, bust yo nut! With Italian stallions Severino and Nico De Ceglia downstairs and hip hip aficionados Mistamaker and JC Wood from Hard Cock Life in the top bar, it’s a night that promises to pack a punch! We caught up with the brains behind it all to find out what prompted them to start a new night and where they plan it take it…
What’s the ethos behind bust yo nut?
Toby: A credible hip hop night for gay people and their friends. Cutting edge music for cutting edge people.
Martyn: Quality house downstairs with some of our favourite DJs, starting with Severino and Nico de Ceglia. We both love old hip hop from the ’80s before it got all gangsta and rubbish, so basically we wanted to hear that music or hip hop being made today that draws on that more positive, upbeat angle that was lost. Throw in the R&B and you’ve got a good party!
How does it differ from other nights you run, such as Handsome?
Toby: BYN is a concept derived from the roots of hip hop and street music. The music is very much based around the US street culture. But like Handsome it is a celebration of music and sexuality.
Martyn: Musically it’s totally different and we’ve got the bonus of having two rooms at DS. This is the first time we’ve done R&B/hip hop, and the house downstairs will be more current than a lot of what we play at Handsome which is about US house from the ’80s onwards.
Why did you decide to have this party here at Superstore?
Toby: The club is at the for forefront of clubbing with a conceptual fresh look at a gay night out.
Martyn: Well, we both come here a lot and know (Superstore boss) Dan Beaumont well so it just kind of happened. One of those, “We’ve got an idea for a night”, scribbled on the back of a fag packet kind of developments.
Dalston or Vauxhall?
Martyn: Far too controversial! Let’s just say it’s different strokes.
Toby: Both… The whole idea of what we want to do is about bringing people TOGETHER.
What current club nights inspire you (in any way)?
Martyn: Well, I probably shouldn’t admit this but I’ve still not been to the bloody Berghain, but from reports that is totally up my strasse! My favourite club is Cavo in Mykonos… in the summer they have amazing guests and it overlooks the sea, but I guess with a setting like that you can’t go wrong! In London Horse Meat Disco is a staple. I love the music, the venue, and they’re good boys too.
Tell us one track YOU hope to hear in the top bar?
Toby: I am a ’90s fanatic, so I love a bit of Guy, Mantronix or TLC.
Martyn: Magic’s Wand by Whodini.
And another track for the lazer basement?
Toby: Seve will serve up all I could ever want… Amazing DJ!
Martyn: Hood Funk by Kevin Over. Heard it the other day and got a right shimmy on!
What might we expect from future bust yo nut’s?
Toby: Great parties, good times, a bit of the bop!
Martyn: It’s all about the music! So we’ll be baying for quality guests upstairs and down. Having JC Wood who runs HCL and Mistamaker is great as they know the music inside out. I’m a bit of a layman with hip hop but it would be good to give DJs who like the music policy upstairs a chance to play. There are other hip hop/R&B nights on in east London which is great, but apart from them I think that genre of music has been associated with moodiness and naff attitude which is a shame as I don’t think it started in that place, and there’s where we’d like to take it back to.
If you could go back in time to any dance floor ANYWHERE, where would we be going?
Martyn: The Pines parties on Fire Island in the Seventies. I bet they were bonkers fun. And I know it’s a bit cliched now but Studio 54 must have been a massive hoot.
Toby: Sign O Times was an amazing party, bringing together a completely eclectic mix of people. So many clubs I would go back to… The late ’80s & early ’90s were a paradise for a clubber!
Explain in three words why everyone should be at bust yo nut next week?
Martyn: The answer’s in the title!
Toby: BUST(ing) YO NUTS!
Join Martyn and Toby for bust yo nut at Dalston Superstore next Saturday 9th February from 9pm – 4am.
Dalston Superstore is proud to launch a special new party called the T-Club, we asked promoter Stav B to give us the lowdown…
You’ve been a fixture of London clubland for a while… Tell us about yourself!
A fixture? Haha! That is cute! I suppose I have become after all these years of diverse outings!
I have lived in london for 22 long, challenging and rewarding years and I still love london and constantly discover marvels and delights everywhere I go!
I am a visual artist, using photography and performance to manifest my work. It’s all about love and identity and they are dramatic, humorous visual spectacles. I have been an active, practising artist since 1993. I own and run a pop up cocktail bar, called Stav B’s Liquor Bar, where thematic one night only events and site specific approaching keep it fresh and alive, via the consumption of tailor made cocktails which I devise and mix. I also organise an avant garde night for women, called Queen Bees, which started romantically and nicely in a tiny bar in Brixton in 2006. All are welcome, but women take over the stage, the decks and the walls. Again, the theme is paramount for its character and Grace Jones its mascot. The T Club is my new venture, launching proudly this March at Dalston Superstore and I’m very excited about it. In between all this activity of conceiving, planning, curating, arranging, delegating and ultimately performing, I hold a full time job, endlessly socialising and cultivating my being…
What are your favourite places to go out?
For lunch, cake and camomile tea and TLC, I’ll go to Fabrica; for a meeting, lunch, dinner, an artist’s private view and club, you’ll find me at Dalston Superstore, which is perfect, friendly and open minded; Vogue Fabrics, for some downright sweating experience and supporting friend’s nights, Alibi, East Bloc and the old stint at The Joiners the last minute for a nightcap and a boogie on trash classics! Also, totally open to a good house/ warehouse/ club party with good music and good folk!
What prompted you to start the T club?
A trans friend of mine was refused entry to a lesbian club. He was distraught. I was furious. I did not understand why a disco would refuse entry to a punter, who just wanted to mingle, dance and generally socialise, for the fact that he was transgender! A Facebook debate begun, among butch, lesbians, trans, queer folk… I jokingly said: what if I open a club for trans, women as guests? And it had a positive and understanding response and as my mind is ticking constantly for new things, a flame triggered and I decided to follow it through…
It is very important to understand though, especially for the people who read this and don’t know me, that the T club is an avant garde night for trans people and all in between and everyone is welcome. What is not welcome is discrimination, fear and intolerance… The T Club is celebrating gender diversity and is giving out trans sisters and brothers a safe disco to have fun in! It’s rather simple…
How can the queer community help fight transphobia?
Education, visibility, communication, honesty, acceptance, understanding and tolerance and lots and lots and lots of love! We are all in this pot of life together and we must stick together, celebrating difference, which makes us all very special and unique!
What music can we expect to hear at the T club?
The music policy in my clubs is always of the highest quality and the array of genres… diverse: expect a good combo of hip hop/ garage/ riott girl punk/indie/ ragga/ drum n’ bass/ ’60s girls garage/ new indie northern soul/ post punk between kanchi and the librarian and I suspect DJ Felix would probably throw some lively pop in too!
Stav B’s T Club takes place at Dalston Superstore on Thursday 22nd March from 9pm to 3am.
UK artist Shucks One presented a unique visual art exhibition celebrating the themes of consciousness, positive attributes and important figures in classic UK and US hip hop culture, discussing its wider implications on modern culture.
Foundation Rocks combined a series of portraits, illustrations and sculpture, capturing the original hip hop mantras of “peace, love, and unity; knowledge, wisdom and understanding”, presenting a challenge to the dominating themes of violence, negativity and corporatism which resonate throughout hip hop today. The project was the artists’ search to rediscover these foundation principles by retracing the history of UK hip hop music and the individuals making it. It was an attempt to cement the originators of UK hip hop as icons for British music fans, who are often more familiar with the originators in the US.
The exhibition was a visual interpretation of interviews Shucks One conducted with hip hop pioneers of the 1980s, whose music influenced a whole generation of young men and women in the UK. The works addressed issues of history, identity and religion.
Shucks One donated a percentage of any sales made from the exhibition and also held a raffle on the night of the private view to raise money for the charity WAYout.
About Shucks One
Shucks One is an artist, radio DJ, youth worker and experienced freelance journalist specialising in hiphop music and culture.
Through painted pieces Shucks One has developed a way of expressing and contextualising the history of modern day street music and art.
Using a variety of objects as canvasses, such as furniture, clothing, masks and found wood, Shucks One creates a sketchbook, a mix tape way of exhibiting work, going back to the core ethics of street music and art. Using bold colours, pattern reminiscent of tribal fabric prints and ancient symbols Shucks One discusses themes of cultural heritage.
“The term ‘old school’ is often banded around without any real understanding of the underlying themes. With this series of works I intend to explore messages and concepts, not just from hip-hop, but human history as well. It is part history lesson, part hip hop project.”
About WAYout Charity
WAYout Charity provides arts and media training to disadvantaged and street youth in Sierra Leone. In 2010 they worked with over 600 young people who explored subjects as diverse as street life, HIV and teenage pregnancy, using music, comedy, soap opera and documentary. Their films have reached audiences in excess of 35,000 people. Users now tell them they want a base. A place where they can write, rehearse, learn, edit, shoot, show their work or just exchange ideas and support each other. The Hub/ arts centre is the natural next step and is what they are currently fundraising for.
Wallpaper By Jonas Ranson
Print graduate of the Royal College of Art, Jonas Ranson is an East London based artist originally from Essex. His work falls into two main categories which encompass the twin strands of both Fine Art Practice and Illustration. Recent activities have included projects as diverse as printed backdrops for ID Magazine fashion shoots, wallpapers for TENT London, Design Week, Christies ‘Multiplied’ Editions fair, screen print workshops for Sommerset House Pick Me Up Graphics Art Fair, and design collaborations with head of menswear at Versace, designer Martyn Bal. He has also produced fashion illustration for ELLE Magazine, and has worked on various print projects with Berlin based print Gallery RISE BERLIN. Jonas is also co-curator of LINEAR B, an international group exhibition currently showing at the Stephen Lawrence Gallery, Greenwich.
Jonas’s work is diverse, drawn equally to abstraction, to the world of fashion as well as it is to the ideas and symbolism of the occult and its association with the more disreputable forms of popular entertainment. Prints are achieved through treatment in both digital conversion and photographic silkscreen processes. Both detailed and abstract, the design strategy is one that combines traditional drawing and digital technique. Both his print and Illustration work is an attempt to retain and freely pursue his own conceptual ambitions artistically, but that the conceptual goals target the intended consequence of the client’s ambition.